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By John Helmer, Moscow Mikhail Prokhorov thinks that his American basketball franchise, the Brooklyn (née New Jersey) Nets has grown eightfold in value in the five years since he acquired it for $223 million. For the time being, though, noone agrees with him. That’s to say there is no buyer at Prokhorov’s asking price of […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow A top secret file of papers from Vnesheconombank (VEB) has leaked into the Moscow internet, disclosing a verbatim record of recent billion-dollar project reviews by the Russian state bank of last resort. The papers reveal that the multi-billion dollar Darwendale platinum mining project announced officialLy last month in Zimbabwe has been […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The defeat by Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk of President Petro Poroshenko in the party voting at Sunday’s Ukrainian parliamentary election reveals a shift of voter sentiment no pollster predicted beforehand – neither the independent Ukrainian polling organizations in Kiev, nor the US Government-funded surveys. On the other hand, the independent Ukrainian […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow It is easier to know what’s inside a McDonald’s hamburger than inside the corporation’s financial accounts. That’s because the type font on the internet version of the corporation’s financial reports is so small, a magnifying-glass is required at the computer screen to decipher the text; even then computer programming by McDonald’s […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The outcome of Sunday’s Ukrainian parliamentary election is likely to be a majority of deputies in favour of war in the east, and against Russia. This is because the Ukrainian economy is ruined, so for the foreseeable future, war draws US (IMF, World Bank) and European Union cash stipends which are […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The world’s most mysterious, and expensive, hole in the ground has been ceremonially opened by the Russian Foreign and Trade Ministers, Sergei Lavrov and Denis Manturov. At least that’s what they say they did a month ago in Harare, the capital of Zimbabwe. The President of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe (lead image, […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Voter polling by the US Agency for Intrnational Development in Ukraine reveals that if the eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Lugansk fail to cast votes, the outcome will be a hung parliament. President Petro Poroshenko’s (lead image, left) bloc, according to the US- funded polls taken in September, will lead […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow United Company Rusal, the Russian aluminium monopoly, has announced it has won a judgement of the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) confirming its shareholding control of the Aluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria (Alscon), the only aluminium producer in the west African state. The LCIA, Rusal claims, has defeated the Nigerian […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow “The genius of you Americans is that you never made clear-cut stupid moves, only complicated stupid moves.” That was Gamal Abdel Nasser addressing a CIA man he knew well, who’d been involved in a series of plots to assassinate Nasser, all hapless. The year was 1957; that’s 57 years ago. If […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow A Washington think-tank, funded by the US Government, has discovered that at least half of all Ukrainians think that not enough force has been used to put down the Donetsk and Lugansk regions. Even more Ukrainians express confidence in the military – 66% in the pro-Kiev volunteer battalions, and 76% in […]